Gratitude turns what we have into enough. - Anonymous In a previous post, I wrote about my book journal. I also have a sketchbook and a writer’s journal. My husband will tell you that I need another journal like a porcupine needs more quills, but I added one more to my collection: a gratitude journal. … Continue reading Expressing Gratitude Daily
As I work through the stack of unread books teetering on my nightstand, I cast them a critical eye as to whether I’d like to revisit them in the future. Better yet, in the case of a series, if I’d like to check in for more stories in that world. I hate to admit that … Continue reading Reading my Stash: A Legacy of Murder by Connie Berry
My cozy-in-progress is having a personality crisis. I have the murder mapped out. I know who got killed, why they got killed, and whodunnit. But I’m floundering on the characters. They’re flat. They behave in odd ways that don’t feel authentic. In one case, I made my main character do something that felt completely wrong. … Continue reading Short Stories: Getting to Know My Characters
When I was a teenager, my first summer job was as a camp counselor. Yep, it was the traditional tents in the woods, meals in a lodge, and campfires every evening. Around those campfires we sang songs and played games, one of which was Round Robin. If you’ve never participated in a round robin, the … Continue reading Round Robins: Flexing Those Creative Muscles
M.C. Beaton (a.k.a. Marion Chesney Gibbons) Early this year, I was saddened to learn of the death of one of my favorite authors, M.C. Beaton. I’m not alone. Beaton (real name Marion Chesney Gibbons) was a prolific writer whose mystery novels rank among the most popular of the genre, both in book sales and library … Continue reading Is M.C. Beaton a Cozy Mystery Writer?
There is a difference between solitude and isolation. One is connected and one isn’t. Solitude replenishes, isolation diminishes. – Henry Cloud I think, if you have enough inner resources, then you can live in isolation for long periods of time and not feel diminished by it. – Aung San Suu Kyi When you’re obligated to … Continue reading Getting Along in a Time of Social Distancing
Last month I revisited Blood Orange Brewing by Laura Childs. The Tea Shop Mystery series takes place in the city where my children were born: Charleston, SC. As I turned the pages, I recognized the picturesque gardens, the stately homes South of Broad, and the quaint shops dotting downtown. The images in my mind were … Continue reading Location, Location, Location: A New Character in Town
The publisher’s summary of Cliff Hanger (A Maggie McDonald Mystery, #5) by Mary Feliz: Maggie has her work cut out for her helping Renée Alvarez organize her property management office. Though the condominium complex boasts a prime location on the shores of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, aging buildings and the high-maintenance tenants have … Continue reading Review: Cliff Hanger by Mary Feliz
Before we settle into Friday Classics featuring the Golden Age of Mystery fiction, it might be a good idea to define the boundaries. The questions of when, where, and what kind of mystery might pop into a reader’s mind. Are they cozies? Are they hard-boiled or over easy? Amateur or detective? British country house or … Continue reading Friday Classics: The Golden Age of Mystery
If you’ve read anything about writing a blog, the number one piece of advice is be consistent. Set a schedule and, above all, stick to it. Don’t let your readers down by dropping out. What did I do for the last couple of months? I dropped out. I owe everyone a big, slurpy apology for … Continue reading Mea Culpa and Thank You!